Tackling the barriers to mobile payment

With nearly three out of four consumers globally (71%) having access to the internet via a smartphone, retailers would be justified in thinking that the time is finally right for people to pay for goods and services via their mobile phone. However, in our study1 of 17,000 consumers carried out in 17 countries, we identified that just 5% of transactions are made using a mobile device.

Although cash and cards are still used for the majority of transactions (46% and 45% respectively), there is enthusiasm to pay via mobile. In this article we investigate the appetite to pay by mobile and the two key barriers – the two "Ts" of trust and technology – that are preventing widespread adoption.

Current and future appetite for mobile payment

28% of global respondents currently make mobile payments two to three times a month. Although this represents just a fraction of transactions overall, it does show that there is significant potential to achieve more widespread adoption. Appetite and use is far higher in Asia Pacific where 17% of people pay by mobile four to ten times a month, one third (33%) two to three times a month, and almost half (46%) during a six month period. By comparison this last figure is nearly double the number in Western Europe (24%).